10 Ways to Make Extra Money

A nice way to supplement regular income can be to find ways to make extra cash.  It’s fun to get some money in ways that don’t involve the main source of income, as it often ends up being excess that we weren’t counting on to begin with.  Extra money almost seems like a bonus of sorts!

Here are 10 ways to earn extra money

  1. Tutoring.  Surprised to see this first? Well, if you’re reading a personal finance blog, you’re likely interested in self-improvement and open to learning.  Why not pass on some knowledge to others who might need help?  Perhaps you can feel good about helping others, while earning some supplementary money as well.  $10 to $20 per hour might be possible, you never know.
  2. Freelance writing.  If you have specialized knowledge, or are simply passionate about a subject, you might be able to land a gig as a freelance writer.  Again, if you’re reading this personal finance blog, you probably have an interest in money and related topics. If you have writing ability, maybe somebody out there has a need for some help? Perhaps you could get $15 to $25 per article, who knows?
  3. Selling non-traditional ads.  I spoke about this in a post about how to monetize anything, where different ideas of selling “ad space” were discussed. For example, selling space on your car, side of a home, etc.  Sometimes thinking out of the box a bit, and doing something non-traditional, can yield extra money. There is value to the number of eyeballs and impressions seeing an ad, even if through such alternative channels!
  4. Participating in market research.  This might be more lucrative depending on your line of work or specialized knowledge, but there are opportunities to get paid to participate in market research.   I did this in college once, getting some money to answer questions for perhaps 30 minutes of time.
  5. Walking dogs.  I wouldn’t find this to be fun, and don’t have time for this anyway the way my life is structured. Plus, I’m allergic to them:)  However, if you have the free time, like pets, and wouldn’t mind a little extra exercise, perhaps you could try this.
  6. Yard work.  This is something I have outsourced, as I prefer to do other things with my time.  With plenty of people like me out there, why not take advantage of the situation and do some outdoors work? If you like time outside and can do things quickly, perhaps you can make a little extra cash with a short time commitment.
  7. Mystery shopping.  I’ve never done this and don’t know anybody who does this, but from what I understand there are people who can earn a little bit of money on the side doing this.
  8. Selling blood or plasma.  Okay, another thing that I don’t want to do.  Plus, I don’t think you can do this all that frequently.  But if you would like a little bit of extra cash, this is one source that might be good for a few bucks on a periodic basis.
  9. Entering sweepstakes.  This might not directly result in money, but there are some giveaways/sweepstakes/contests that might offer pretty good chances to win.  Some bloggers offer such contests, and the number of entrants might be surprisingly low considering the quality of some prizes.  Maybe you could turn around and sell your prize, or just save money you could have spent if you had bought it instead.
  10. Blogging.  Hey, you might earn a few bucks this way! J  If it’s something you might do for fun as a hobby anyway, maybe you could make a little bit of money in the process?

My Questions For You

How many of these things have you done, or would you actually consider doing, in order to earn extra money?

Are there any on the list that you just have no interest whatsoever in doing?

Do you have any other legit ideas for ways to earn some extra income?


  1. says

    I mystery shop. At first it was fun (because I got free things) and was good money. But now I’m burnt out from it. The pay seems to have decreased because I’m guessing more and more people have been wanting to do it.

    • Squirrelers says

      Michelle – cool, a mystery shopper! If the pay has decreased, I can see how that would make it less motivating to do it.

  2. says

    In a desperate period of my life, I seriously considered donating plasma, but never did. (I think I was taking medication at the time that would have precluded it anyway.) I’ve done some tutoring–but that was volunteer. I’ve dabbled in freelance writing, but sold only one article. I’d really like to sell the space on the front of my baseball-style cap, but so far, no takers. :-) I once participated in a focus group for a little cash. As a kid, I did yard work for money, but not since. And blogging–well, I’m trying!

    • Squirrelers says

      Kurt – hey you never know….maybe a local small business might offer you a little money, free food, etc for an ad on your hat :)

  3. says

    I am fortunate to not really need extra income, which is good because my job takes so much out of me. My wife is doing some tutoring while off for the summer from teaching, and it’s a nice little boost to the vacation fund.

    • Squirrelers says

      John – that’s one thing about extra money, if a primary job takes up a lot of time, there’s not much left for side income.

  4. says

    Nice list here – I’ve actually done a lot of these things. The only ones I havent done are mystery shopping (no interest) entering sweepstakes and selling non-traditional ads. I’d be open to the ads, depending on where they wanted to place the advertisement

    • Squirrelers says

      Lance – I’m sure legions of kids made good money with lawnmowing. People like me who dislike mowing lawns are abundant:)

  5. says

    1.Tutoring. Yep, English while I lived in Argentina.
    2.Freelance writing. Yep.
    3.Selling non-traditional ads. Tried but no takers on my car.
    4.Participating in market research. Yep, made $100 for a pet survey.
    5.Walking dogs. Yep in middle school.
    6.Yard work. Nope.
    7.Mystery shopping. Not yet.
    8.Selling blood or plasma. Tried but cannot find a place that pays in Houston.
    9.Entering sweepstakes. Yep, for fun.
    10.Blogging. Yep

    I am also trying to become a cow mascot for a fast food chain.

  6. Squirrelers says

    Amy – every little bit of money helps, so it’s good to be aware of such possiblities for some folks.

  7. says

    One year I was so broke I sold almost everything I had on Ebay. It is a lot of work and you can get get really burnt out fast. I did make over $2000 doing it. I recommend it as a way to make some money.
    I am trying my hand at blogging but I know it’s going to be a long haul with becoming profitable in that field. All I recommend is you have a topic that you know you won’t get tired of. The rate of failure is high and the amount of work is tiring at times. You have to have a passion in anything you do anyway.

  8. says

    I like the idea of selling ad space on my car, since that won’t eat up any of my scarce time. The only problem is, my car is so old that I don’t think any company would want its name/logo to be associated with it!

    • Squirrelers says

      Paula – LOL! You do make a good qualifying point there. And also, you’re right about the consideration of time. I know what you mean about it being scarce.

  9. says

    My children have earned a little bit of money as subjects in child development studies at the local university. They love it, because they get to get somewhere with cool toys and play. The money earned goes into their 529 plan for college.

    Great job playing kids!

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